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Panasonic P2HD / DVCPRO HD Camcorders
All AG-HPX and AJ-PX Series camcorders and P2 / P2HD hardware.


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Old May 7th, 2005, 04:44 PM   #16
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citidisk

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aaron J.H. Walker
Thanks for the reply to my post about the citidisk. Those prices are only slightly lower than the Focus but my question still remains, anybody seen the the street prices or where to get one? The reviews I found sure trumpeted the thing as a lower cost alternative to the Focus drives but if nobody has them for sale ... I couldn't even find them on B&H last I checked.
here are some firestore alternatives for sale online. they are slightly cheaper and support dvcpro. the only issue i see is their specified capture rate of 12MB. that's a little too close to 100mbps which doesn't include audio. might only be good for dvcpro50 and lower.

http://www.interloper.com/products/index.php?cat=5310

http://www.shining.com/cgi-bin/STIst...0%28FW1256C%29

http://store.mcetech.com/Merchant2/m...roduct_Count=3
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Old May 7th, 2005, 05:50 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aaron J.H. Walker
And, as nice as Panny can be in terms of listening to their users, I can't see them offering a P2 camera that let you output to a third party's storage device since they would loss money on their proprietary system.
And yet, that's exactly what they're doing, since they recruited Focus to develop a DVCPRO-HD-compatible FireStore...

Quote:
Now, however, if there was a way to marry a P2 to a firewire cable then kick out to a third party hard drive/storage device similar to the Focus or other makers, I would stand in line with everyone else for the new camera. But doesn't something like that already exist where you can plug in a PCMIA card into a notebook and then plug a firewire cable?
That may very well work. Needs to be tested to see.

I predict that there will be several alternatives to P2 with this camera. Right out of the box you will be able to record HD straight to a computer, or straight to a DVCPRO-HD tape deck, and never even have to see a P2 card. Others will develop other alternatives as well, that's a safe bet.
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Old May 7th, 2005, 05:57 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aaron J.H. Walker
I am interested because moving to a tapeless acquisition would be fabulous but, although I am a very proud and happy Panny DVC 80 owner, I am still not convinced about this P2 "miracle" due to the high cost, proprietary and, at least at this time, limited capacity nature of the medium. And, as nice as Panny can be in terms of listening to their users, I can't see them offering a P2 camera that let you output to a third party's storage device since they would loss money on their proprietary system.
This is where a LOT of people seem to be getting confused and hung up on issues with P2.... First of all, there is *nothing* proprietary about P2. It is a standard PCMCIA Type II storage device and works in any standard Type II PC card slot. It is a very loosely licensed format and we can expect to see several third party P2 offerings. I'm guessing that PC storage cards will need to have a firmware flag identifying them as "P2 Compliant" in order for the HVX to use them, but that's minor.

As for price, yes P2 is expensive - especially with Panasonic's prices. However, take the price of P2 cards into consideration with the costs of your current workflow... They may make sense, or maybe not. I have shot nearly 300 DV tapes with my DVX100 since buying it and I have purchased DV tapes by quantities of 50 at a time for about $5.25 (Panny MQ tapes only in my DVX) per tape plus a little for shipping. Actually having purchased a full 300 tapes and I'll probably buy at least another 50 tapes before the HVX200 arrives, that adds up. I tend to archive all my video separately on DLT along with the rest of my project workflows as it is, so archiving DVCPro off of P2 won't cost me any more in the long run, it should just give me higher quality video to start with since most all my video is upconverted to fit my workflow before it lands on DLT anyway. So, I've already spent (in about 18 months) on tape what I would spend for an 8GB P2 card at the current full MSRP. I don't re-use tape with my DVX. Never even tried it. I learned with my previous cameras that after recording to a tape and then capturing from it a time or two, that if I try to erase and re-record to it, drop-outs became a lot more possible, but using a tape only once I think I experience a drop-out maybe once out of every 20 hours or so of video I shoot and it's probably even less frequent than that. Anyway, moving to P2 will provide a media that will cost no more within my workflow than DV tape over the period of about 3 years (considering two 8GB P2 cards), plus it will give me DVCPro50 and HD capability. So, is P2 really expensive?

For others who don't have a comprehensive backup solution in place already, there may be more of an impact in regards to cost and setting up a P2 workflow. However, I have to ask how everyone archives their work? Does nobody else actually archive their final projects or even in-progress versions of their stuff? I know a lot of people send their final back out to DV tape for archival (just add more DV tape costs into the mix). Most of what I do sees final delivery on DVD, and archiving back to DV tape makes little sense. Most of my internal workflow for CG and animation is already 1080p as I have been trying to future-proof my work as of the past 2 years. So, I keep my archives on DLT since most of my work has to be down-rez'd to DVD. When HD-DVD/BluRay come along, I can re-encode off my DLT master for the new format and already have HD content available. Having a camera that brings me closer to my internal working resolution with less upconverting is a no-brainer.

For someone who has been trapped entirely in a 720x480i miniDV world, stepping into an HVX200 and P2 workflow will be a big change. But this person will also be taking a step up. It's not that Panasonic has raised the price level of their next prosumer camera... They have actually lowered the price of entry into their professional line offering DV50 and the same HD formats used by the Varicam.
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Old May 9th, 2005, 12:02 AM   #19
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sorry everyone

Craig, thanks for the links. They were just what I was looking for. I'll keep savin' my pennies.

Barry, if Firestore (or anyone else for that matter) will be releasing a more economical work around, I'll stand by my word and stand in line for the new Panny :) I may not have the computing prowess for HD but hopefully I will for up to DVCPRO50. Plus I am still trying to get a straight answer if Vegas can handle the Panny HD codec.

And Jeff; didn't mean to get you so upset buddy. I guess I am really very price sensitive since I am still trying to prove to my wife this will actually turn into something besides a very expensive indulgence at the moment. And I see I was mistakenly under the impression that P2 was a proprietary format but thank you for correcting me.
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Old May 9th, 2005, 06:08 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aaron J.H. Walker
And Jeff; didn't mean to get you so upset buddy. I guess I am really very price sensitive since I am still trying to prove to my wife this will actually turn into something besides a very expensive indulgence at the moment. And I see I was mistakenly under the impression that P2 was a proprietary format but thank you for correcting me.

Hehe. No worries, I wasn't upset. I just type fast... Usually faster than I think and that gets me into trouble sometimes. But usually, before I know it, I have written a novel. :)

Anyway, every budget is different and this camera will make great sense for some, but not for others. I'm pretty sure that this is my next camera, but I will wait until it's here and I rent or borrow one to decide for sure. I think that this camera would be a logical upgrade for DVX100 users who could benefit from using DV50 and the ability to shoot HD (with reportedly better quality than the current HDV camcorders), all for a not too unrealistic price. But depending on your workload or type of work you do, it may be more realistic to stick with owning a cheaper camera and renting something even better than the HVX200 for special events/projects.

As for P2, it's not proprietary as we have already said, however it is a format that (as far as camcorders go) has only been adopted by Panasonic. We also still don't know the full details yet on whether or not any capable PC card storage device will work, or if the HVX200 will look for other firmware flags or settings that will force us to use actual P2 labeled cards. Either way, I wouldn't worry about P2 as a new format. PC card storage is standard enough that it shouldn't be a completely dead-end product and if Panasonic can get enough memory card makers to jump on the bandwagon, we'll have plenty of purchase options and lower prices as the format establishes itself.
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